lucy in the sky, skeined.

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lucyFO2

My apologies, up front. I have A LOT of pictures of this skein of handspun.

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lucyFO3

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Just one more. Okay?

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3-ply, 325 yards of almost 4 oz of Crown Mountain Farms Superwash Merino in (wait for it) Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds. I didn’t measure wpi, but it is definitely sock yarn, slightly thicker and squooshier than the blue Spunky Club sock yarn I finished a few weeks ago. I say “almost 4 oz” because I stopped plying when I could not fit any more yarn on the bobbin, rather than when one of the bobbins ran out.

nplylucy

I navajo plied one of the leftover bobbins, and here’s how it looks, unwashed. The trick really is to just slow down. I did this while listening to NPR’s coverage (downloadable!) of Billy Bragg at the Newport Folk Festival, and I found myself treadling very slowly along with his guitar.  There’s something really quite graceful about navajo plying, and I’m excited to keep practicing.

I have more spinning to share — my wheel was looking so empty that I just had to start a project. Or two.

singles shetland41

This is the last of my AVFKW shetland in Fruit Loops — 68 yards of singles. While the rest was done on a spindle, I spun this on the wheel. Not sure what the collection of singles skeins will become, but I’m quite happy with the lot of them.

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And this. I only intended to start this last night, but I ended up spinning a whole bobbin’s worth. This is AVFKW Wensleydale in Intergalactic Space Travel, dyed with indigo, which, as expected, turned my fingers a gorgeous shade of blue. I’m still learning about how dye and fiber react, and with this stuff, I could really see how the saturated spots were different (and more difficult for me to spin) than the lighter sections. I’m aiming for a worsted-ish 2-ply with this, but it might turn out more thick and thin, as the coarser, more saturated parts were making it really tough for me to get into a rhythm and find some level of consistency. I’m really interested to see how this yarn feels once it has had a good soak, as the indigo really changes the feel of the wensleydale.

savoryzucchinibread

(One of these things is not like the others…) A friend from my high desert knitting group emailed me this recipe for a savory zucchini-cheddar bread, and I baked a loaf yesterday afternoon. I used monterey jack instead of cheddar, and upped the dill to make up for my dwindling supply of parsley, and whoa. My go-to zucchini bread is more of a breakfast loaf, but this makes it possible to have zucchini bread at every meal. So delicious.

Three weeks until the semester begins — I can’t believe it. Time to get to work!

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400+.

soulwindowsplied

drying

Hooray! My math skills tell me that I have at least 400 yards of 3-ply here (426, to be precise). I’ll figure out wpi once the skein is dry, but I am thrilled! There should be plenty here for a pair of socks.

I gave this an extra long soak because of how energized it seemed. (Am I supposed to let my plyed yarn rest, too?) You can see that it is a little curly-q-ish down near the bottom of the hanging loop, indicating some overplying, but on the whole, I’m quite happy about this. I’m still looking for that balance between overspinning/underspinning and over/under plying. (And maybe I’ll be forever looking for it!)

Anyway, I was so excited about how this turned out that I just had to sit back down at the wheel, even though it was WAY past my bedtime.

cvm sunset

This is the first bobbin of 2 oz of CVM from cosy in a colorway named sunset. I just sat down and spun, without a plan. I am already seeing that my default spinning is getting thinner, and that I need to really think about what I’m doing to make a thicker, even yarn. I love the richness of these colors — the perfect antidote to a rather rainy summer?

bohispatient

This guy thinks so (or not). I looked up from plying/spinning several times yesterday to find Boh hinting that he might want more attention. We took an extra walk around the neighborhood last night, and we have plans for either a hike or a trip to the d-o-g-p-a-r-k today.

calendar

Also, it is getting to be that time! I realized that this is the last week of my calendar yesterday, and stopped by the campus store to pick up an 09-10 replacement. I love starting a new planner. (Yes, I am a big nerd.) Yesterday I copied pertinent pieces of the fall campus-wide schdule into my calendar and thought a bit about classes/plans for the coming semester, which felt good to me.

That’s enough school talk for a Friday. Have a great weekend!

planning (plotting?)

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“What have we here?” asked Boh upon my return from our weekly knit-gathering. The answer is Sunshine Yarns sock yarn in Olive, a gorgeous, unexpected gift from Ramona, heretofore known as the yarn fairy. (Well, maybe I’ll still call her Ramona.) She also brought me Cat Bordhi’s New Pathways for Sock Knitters to borrow and peruse for ideas/further enabling in the sock knitting department.

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Actually, I think I’ll go do that now: The sun is streaming through my window, I have a steaming cup of coffee in my hand, and I’m wrapped in my favorite blanket. These few hours before I leave for work are my favorite time of the day.

santa is a very nice man.

That is a funnier post title if you are a member of my family. The story goes that my uncle, as a child, discovered the closet where Santa was hiding that year’s Christmas gifts. His mother found him and proceeded to interrogate him to figure out what, if anything, he had been able to piece together about his discovery. To the question, “Well, what have you learned?”, my uncle replied, tears running down his face, “Santa is a very nice man!”

And, indeed, he still is. I received several knitting-related gifts this year. I am very excited about the set of these:

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They are even more wonderful in person. I was a little nervous about the crazy colors, but they are more subtle than I thought, and a joy to knit with. I immediately transferred my Clapotis to a circular, as it was becoming a bit unwieldy as the increase rows progressed.

Eventually I’ll make my knitting resolution list for 2008, but here’s a spoiler: I want to become far more comfortable with socks. To aid me in this endeavor, Santa sent some treats: sock yarn from The Plucky Knitter and Madelinetosh, and Ann Budd’s Getting Started Knitting Socks (it is raining and I am lazy. I will add the links to these folks eventually. Promise.)

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Clearly, Boh is just as excited about the yarn as I am.

I also received a surprise treat from my grandmother. She taught me to knit more than 20 years ago, and though it needed about that long to hibernate before I returned to it, she is super excited that I have taken it up again with such fervor. She dug through her basement and invited me over to show me this:

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Which were inside this:

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I started looking through these, but ultimately decided that they deserve a rainy day and a pot of tea — like today. Too bad I have to go to work in about 20  minutes. This bounty was accompanied by a garbage bag full of acrylic blend yarns and a few unfinished projects. I couldn’t say no to the stash, despite the fiber content, and I’m thinking that it would be great to begin work on a log cabin blanket for my grandmother using her yarn. I am also in need of a mindless project…I’ll have to look at the colors and make some decisions before casting on.

Vacation is over — back to the office. The weather seems to agree with me that this is less than ideal.